Henry Marsh, a British neurosurgeon, visited a state hospital in Ukraine 15 years ago to give a series of lecture. What he saw was so appalling that he began volunteering his time to do surgery and teach the doctors there.
Here's what happened in a typical Ukrainian brain surgery:
Henry Marsh, a senior consultant at St George’s hospital in Tooting, south London, has used the Bosch 9.6 volt battery-operated hand tool to open up the skulls of his patients to remove life-threatening tumours. Occasionally the battery has gone flat halfway through.
The operation is performed with the patients fully awake – a technique that fell out of use in Britain 50 years ago. Marsh said that Ukrainians could withstand such a practice because they were “very tough”.
The 58-year-old consultant travels to Ukraine twice a year to perform free operations at a clinic run by a fellow surgeon, Igor Petrovich. The handyman drill was used because the local doctors could not afford state-of-the-art equipment.